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Sharad Pawar calls Devendra Fadnavis' statements on Maharashtra farmers' protests 'childish'

Mumbai: Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar said that the farmers' stir took place because the Fadnavis government had "fallen asleep", dubbing the chief minister's allegation that some people wanted to create a situation of anarchy in Maharashtra, as childish.

Devendra Fadnavis had on Saturday announced the "biggest-ever" farm loan waiver amid the statewide agitation by cultivators who stalled movement of vegetables and milk over their demands.

As some sections of protesting agriculturists refused to call off the agitation, Fadnavis, without naming the Congress and NCP, alleged that "some people are trying to create anarchy in the state by using farmers".

File image of NCP chief Sharad Pawar. Getty Images

File image of NCP chief Sharad Pawar. Getty Images

Reacting to it, Pawar said, "None of the political parties have taken part in the strike called by farmers. The chief minister's allegations are childish. This is a strike of farmers, led by their representatives only."

"There is no point in giving a political colour to their agitation. Doing so does not suit the chief minister's post," Pawar said in Ratnagiri on Saturday evening.

He also said that, "The strike has taken place only because the government had fallen asleep."

"The chief minister has tried to create a rift between farmers to stop the strike," Pawar alleged.

Fadnavis on Saturday said that the government will waive loans of farmers with small land-holding, and 80 per cent of such farmers in Vidarbha and Marathwada will benefit from it.

Fadnavis said a committee will be formed to decide the details of the loan waiver. The committee will have representatives of farmers too.

While the chief minister agreed to grant the main demand of farmers, which was the loan waiver, it emerged on Saturday that there was no consensus among their leaders about calling off the protest, which continued in many places, blocking supply of milk and vegetables, leading to their prices soaring in cities including Mumbai.

At least 113 farmers were held during the protests across the state for resorting to violent methods like damaging public property and arson, police had said.

Updated Date: Jun 04, 2017 11:25 AM

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